Sanctuary Early Learning Adventure has opened the doors on its brand-new childcare centre in Mermaid Waters.
We chat to Claudia Smith, Early Childhood Teacher at the new centre, to find out more about what local families can expect from this progressive service.
What is your background?
I am originally from the UK, where I lived in the beautiful town of Nantwich in Cheshire. I relocated to the Gold Coast with my family 18 months ago and am loving this new way of life! My teaching career began 19 years ago when I started teaching adults ‘English as a second language’ in Poland as a way of funding my travels. Upon returning to the UK I continued as a lecturer at the local college and realised that whilst I loved teaching, what I’d really like to do is work with young children. Since qualifying in 2004, I haven’t looked back. I have specialised in teaching the Early Years throughout my career and the motivation to work in this area stems from my desire to give children a wholly positive start in their learning journey.
What do you love most about your role as a Kindy teacher?
I love so many things about this job but I love it most when I can see the impact that the work we do is having. I love to see faces light up, happy smiles and contented cheerful children.
What do you like to do when you aren’t in the classroom?
I moved to Australia with my husband and children to be reunited with family who were already out here, so when I’m not in the classroom I’m exploring the Gold Coast with them. I love to walk along the beautiful beaches, I’m constantly in awe of the scenery and the nature. Everything is very different to our lives in the UK and being able to see things such as dolphins swimming past our back garden is simply amazing!
If you weren’t a Kindy teacher, what would you be?
I would still want to work in a career that involves helping and caring for people. Something I’ve always been very interested in, is working with children or adults with additional needs and finding ways to improve their life experiences.
What is your superpower?
Administering minor first aid with a ‘wet paper towel’ and a hug.
What is your never-fail technique for settling down a whole Kindy class?
Using music and action songs, I have a repertoire of songs I have built up over the years and will happily sing at any given time!
What program do you plan on delivering at Sanctuary Mermaid Waters?
I plan to deliver a quality Kindergarten program that draws upon my wealth of experience, my daily observations and assessments of the children and my partnerships with parents. In this way I can be confident that I am equipping the children I teach with what they need, whilst nurturing their individual learning preferences and making sure that they enjoy learning and want to come in every day. I use a variety of approaches, aiming to address the varying learning styles of all children whilst achieving the best possible results. I want to help the children I work with settle quickly and love being there, this means that singing songs, dancing, sharing stories and creating art will feature strongly in the daily program.
Why do you feel that this approach to learning is important for Kindy kids?
This style of learning is important because, essentially, it’s enjoyable, fun and relevant to each child. It is always my goal to make children feel confident to come in to Kindy, and transfer this confidence into independent learning. This provides those vital foundations ready to build on when they enter the next stage. I value the importance of developing children’s ideas through carefully planned activities that foster their natural curiosity and challenge their understanding by taking it on to the next level. I aim for the children to feel secure, valued and think of Kindy as a place they come to learn and have fun. The success of this first stage is crucial to further achievement throughout their future school career. It is vital therefore that this experience is the best I could possibly offer, which is what I always strive for.
What excites you most about joining the Sanctuary team and the new centre?
Having the opportunity to work with an amazing hand-picked team and being part of a culture that shares my philosophies is a very exciting next step for me. The centre itself is a fantastic new design, purpose built to achieve the best outcomes for children, maximising natural light, inspiring resources and exceptional outdoor play spaces all of which allow children to explore and learn.
What can parents expect from the new centre?
At Sanctuary Early Learning Adventure we believe that your child’s learning and development should be an extension of their home environment when they come into Sanctuary’s care. The centre offers dedication to providing the absolute highest levels of education, experiences and care. We value family, community, culture and home life and use these as the cornerstones for our philosophy.
For more information about the education programs at Sanctuary Early Learning Adventures, and for enrolments, head to sanctuarylearning.com.au
You may also like…